Texting while driving – 1.6 million accidents in US a year | 511 Contra Costa

Texting while driving – 1.6 million accidents in US a year

We often talk about transit and biking as a fun, environmentally conscious way to reduce stress and the cost of getting around. Safety is a more serious benefit of letting someone else do the driving
In 2009, 33,808 people died on US highways, and that’s down from over 52,000 in 1980. Can you guess how many died while on transit in 2009? 230.
California leads the country as a legislator of public safety. When California banned the use of hand-held phones while driving in July 2008, many argued that it wasn’t the conversation that distracted drivers, it was messing with the phone itself. Three months later, California banned text messaging at the wheel in a campaign to reduce “distracted driving”.
Read through the statistics and testimonials about the fatal consequences of texting at the wheel, and “distracted driving” begins to feel like an inappropriately cheerful euphemism.
Wireless carrier AT&T produced a series of short documentaries on the lives affected by texting while driving.

Distracted driving is reportedly more dangerous than driving while intoxicated. Despite a general public understanding that distracted driving causes accidents, nearly 30% of people have used a cell phone fairly often or regularly in the last 30 days.
Accordingly, if a cellphone-distracted driver causes an accident, police and victims can absolutely subpoena phone and text records, according to the Contra Costa Times.
Studies show that personal accountability is not as effective as legislation and software solutions. Services like tXtBlocker disable phones over 15 mph (except 911), as well as setting up no-call zones and monitoring driving speed.
If transit isn’t an option for you, at least save your text messaging until you get to your destination. There are enough hazards out there already.

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